Dear Babson Community:
The news this week has been filled with stories of colleges and universities welcoming students back to campus only to abruptly halt in-person learning due to COVID-19 outbreaks. In some cases, physical campuses have been closed and students sent home.
In the coming days, we will welcome many students back to our Babson campuses. We have planned and prepared for our return with comprehensive safety protocols and health guidelines, including a sophisticated testing, contact tracing and symptom reporting operation. But let me be clear: these plans are only as good as behavior allows.
For our community to remain together on campus, we must have universal compliance with health and safety protocols.
All members of our community are expected to abide by our public health guidelines and community standards. Anyone unwilling to commit to our shared expectations – and anyone who knowingly violates our policies – will not be permitted on campus. We will be vigilant in supporting students, faculty and staff in this next normal. We will be equally vigilant in upholding the rules put in place to safeguard our community – and that means quickly and appropriately addressing anyone who chooses not to comply.
Disregarding safety protocols has repercussions that extend beyond individual disciplinary consequences. Compliance is a demonstration of respect for each other and our community. It has become clear that strict adherence to public health guidelines is the only way to keep us together in person.
It is also important to note that this pandemic has impacted every community around the world. Babson welcomes students and employees from all backgrounds and geographies. We pride ourselves on the diverse community we have built. As part of our collective commitment to inclusiveness, we must remain diligent in ensuring that members of our community, no matter their origin or background, are treated with respect and openness, and to avoid unintended profiling based on identity.
We want this to work. We know that being on campus is important to you – it’s important to me, too. Campus will look and feel different, yet being there offers us a measure of personal connection and normalcy that many of us are craving. I believe we can be successful in our next normal. The majority of protocols are simple and straightforward: wear a mask, wash your hands, maintain appropriate distance, report your symptoms, show up for testing. It is a culture shift – it will take collective effort, personal responsibility, and community accountability. We’re in this together.
Our safety protocols and health guidelines are clearly outlined on our Babson Together webpage, in student onboarding and employee training, and through our Covid Health and Safety Requirements and Residence Education Expectations. Please carefully review these guidelines. If you are unable or unwilling to meet the standards designed to help safeguard our community, please reconsider your plans to join us on campus.
It is increasingly clear that COVID-19 will not quickly go away, even when a vaccine is available. We must continue to be flexible and agile, to manage and lead through uncertainty. I am confident we can thrive – as entrepreneurial leaders and as One Babson.